So you want to shoot in your first PRS/Practical Rifle style competition but you don’t know what to do or you are a little nervous and not really sure. Do I just go and watch to see what it is all about? Or do I jump right in and hope for the best? I’m sure these are all questions any competitive rifle shooter has asked themselves when they first started in the competition scene. I was in this situation myself only a few short months ago. Chances are you already have the gear and knowledge to compete.
I say: JUMP RIGHT IN!! The best way to get into PRS/Practical Rifle style competitions is just to shoot one. Your fellow shooters will be more than accommodating and willing to help you on your way.
So, what do you need for your first competition? Do you have the right equipment?
The first thing you will need is a centrefire rifle and ammunition that is at least Minute-Of-Angle (MOA) capable with two detachable 10 round magazines and a scope with target style turrets in Mil-Radian or MOA clicks. Ideally this scope should have some sort of ranging reticle such as Mil dots or even something more complex like a Horus H59.
Once you have this rifle and scope combination you will need to have your DOPE (Data On Previous Engagements). There are heaps of other articles out there that can explain how to gather dope. I may even do one myself at some stage.
At the bare minimum extra equipment I would recommend you have is a bi-pod and some sort of rear bag. If you are in Australia I can highly recommend my mate James over at LowVis Gear for all your rear bag needs (as well as a plethora of other items that can be helpful – If he doesn’t have what you want to help you out just ask him, i’m sure he will be able to point you in the right direction). Tell him I sent you.
Now you have the rifle and scope with everything else I mentioned above, go find a shoot to compete in. At the moment these types of competitions are slim pickings in Australia. With any luck the PRS will take off fully next year. The Australian Precision Service Rifle Series is in full swing and shows no signs of slowing down. Practical Rifle Northern Territory runs a solid shoot too.
At the end of the day you will learn heaps more from competing in these competitions rather than just watching. Most of all have fun and gain experience. You might just do better than you had expected.
Note: All of these competitions have different rules. Some range complexes have caliber and energy limits. Contact the event organisers to make sure what you have fits within their rules.
Precision Rifle Guy